If you get the unfortunate news that one of your best friends has cancer, you might feel defeated and discouraged. However, do not allow this to get in the way of showing support to a friend undergoing cancer treatment. In the end, your friendship is still the same, and they might need a trusting companion to help them navigate this challenging time. Use the tips below to show your support.
Prepare Yourself Beforehand
When your friend tells you they have cancer, you may need to take some time to get your bearings to support your friend fully. This news will be difficult to process, but if you can compose your thoughts, feelings, and emotions before you visit or see them, you can better help by focusing solely on their needs. Keep your friend’s perspective on their diagnosis in mind so that you can support them to the best of your ability.
Lend a Listening Ear
This period is an uncomfortable time in your friend’s life, and you may have awkward conversations with them. Do not avoid specific topics—feeling sad is perfectly OK. In fact, working through sadness together is always best. Whenever your friend needs a listening ear, do not hesitate to be there for them. Sometimes the thing they need is to vent to someone who cares for them.
Offer Your Help
When you’re supporting a friend through cancer treatment, they might be stubborn when asking for help. However, they would likely appreciate your assistance. Offer to help drive your friend to appointments, watch the kids, cook dinner, walk the dog, and more. Anything you can do, no matter how small, can alleviate a lot of stress for your friend.
Show Your Support
Do you know what it means when you’re driving your car and notice a colored ribbon on the back of another vehicle? Learning about the various awareness ribbons and their color meanings is a subtle way to showcase your support for a loved one battling illness, cancer, or other medical challenges. Consider wearing the colors representing your friend’s cancer or add a decal to your car to bring awareness to their condition.
Do Not Treat Them Differently
Just because your friend has cancer and is going through treatment does not mean the dynamic of your friendship must change. Do not treat them any differently than you did before they were sick. Your friend understands that life is different, but you can provide them with comfort by not letting this illness interrupt your friendship.
It’s not going to be easy to support your friend through this time, but support is what they need from you most. Together, you can strengthen your relationship; plus, nobody should have to go through cancer alone. How will you support your friend during their time of need?